MSU plans for “more typical” fall semester

MSU Graduate poses with the spartan on Michigan State University's campus.
MSU Graduate poses with the spartan on Michigan State University's campus.(Jace Harper)
Published: Mar. 5, 2021 at 12:12 PM EST
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

EAST LANSING, Mich. (WILX) - Michigan State University announced it is planning to return to a more typical semester schedule.

MSU president Samuel L. Stanley Jr., M.D. announced the move in an email Friday morning.

“Like many of you, I am eager to get back to working and learning together on campus later this year,” Stanley said. “While we continue to prioritize the health and safety of our community, we also realize the need to plan for summer and fall on and off MSU’s campus.”

Fall 2021 semester

“The university is planning for a more typical fall semester, with 75% of undergraduate classes offered in-person,” Stanley said. “Classes will be offered in multiple scenarios — in person, hybrid, and some still online, especially those that would traditionally fill large lecture halls. We expect that routine mitigation testing and other public health policies will continue at some level in the fall, and all of us will need to adhere to these policies and engage in the actions and behaviors that have kept us safe and healthy.

  • We will offer a residence hall experience to first-year students and as many other students as possible while still providing a safe living space.
  • MSU Athletics is planning for fall events with spectators again, although we’ll be following state requirements and guidelines that will be in place at that time regarding attendance.
  • The Wharton Center and Broad Art Museum are planning events this fall.
  • Community-based activities will be permitted in alignment with local and state requirements and guidelines.
  • Our current university-related travel restrictions will be adapted to location-based guidance.
  • As we prepare for more students to be back on campus in the fall, we also will have more employees returning to in-person positions as well. More information will be coming from unit supervisors and leaders in the coming months.

Summer 2021 semester

We’ve learned a lot over the course of the pandemic, and we’ve adapted our safety protocols and policies accordingly to ensure the health, safety and well-being of each of you. This spring, we increased our in-person offerings and nearly doubled the number of students living on campus. As vaccination rates continue to rise and the pandemic recedes, we will take every opportunity to add additional in-person courses to the schedule this summer.

  • Most summer classes will be online, which is MSU’s standard practice for summer sessions. Classes for labs and programs that require in-person interaction will continue.
  • There will be no large summer camps or events on campus. Nearly all of the conferences usually planned for MSU’s campus have chosen not to hold their events.
  • Limited day camps may occur, such as those that are primarily outdoors and are able to adhere to safety protocols.
  • We will have students living on campus this summer who are participating in classes, labs or who call MSU their home.
  • We are restarting in-person campus tours this month, and those will continue throughout the summer.

“Making decisions now about the future of our university is not an easy task, as the pandemic has shown us,” says Stanley. “However, with vaccinations continuing to progress, we are optimistic that we can begin to safely transition during the summer and move toward more in-person experiences in the fall — all while continuing to prioritize the health and well-being of our students, faculty, and staff.”

As of Friday morning, more than 2.4 million doses of COVID-19 vaccines have been administered to Michigan residents. Of those, 1.5 million residents have received their first dose and 880,000 are fully vaccinated.

Stanley is encouraging students, faculty, and staff to get the vaccine when it is available to them. He directing them to the state of Michigan’s vaccine-finder application on its website to search for locations to get the vaccine.

“I am excited at the prospect of coming back together again, and I am greatly looking forward to seeing our vibrant community of students, faculty, and staff fully engaged in on-campus life. Optimism is a good feeling, but let’s not let our guard down. Continue to keep yourself safe, follow safety protocols and be empathetic to each other as we move toward the summer and fall semesters.”

Copyright 2021 WILX. All rights reserved.